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Showing posts from 2013

Football owners tell managers who REALLY is boss

Vincent Tan (L) with Malky Mackay (R) (Image: The Times) PR blunder for Cardiff City as misguided Mackay sees Bluebirds lurk in relegation zone before New Year I have a passion for football. Regular readers of my blog would realise this. And having been born and raised in Cardiff, you could imagine how I felt earlier this year when my local football team promoted to the most popular and commercialised league in the world for the first time. The thought of teams like Liverpool, Manchester United, and my beloved Chelsea coming to the Welsh capital was indescribable. Considering Cardiff was in financial trouble this time 3-4 years ago, it was almost unimaginable that this side would be where they are today. However, despite living in dreamland, things haven't been easy for Cardiff this season. They are learning the hard way that top flight football is both extremely competitive and challenging. Only the very few ambitious, yet deluded supporters were expecting Cardiff to

World leaders must be realistic about their 'green' dream

In Britain, we are constantly being reminded of how much we like to indulge. Experts are already predicting that most of us will be 'obese' in the next ten years. Hearing people say things like this is alarming so some take drastic measures to either lose the fat they have or maintain their 'ideal' physique. In recent years, dieticians have come up with cooky ideas which help people achieve their physical aim. For example, we have the Atkins Diet where people opt for eating lots of meat and very little carbohydrates. One diet which has caused a stir, particularly this year, is the 5-2 diet where you eat the 'normal' requirement of food (2,000 calories for women and 2,500 for men) for five days in a week while for the other two days, cut the calorie intake to a quarter of the normal level (500 calories for women and 600 for men). We take our bodies seriously, more now than ever before due to media pressure - glossy magazines showcase 'inspirational' wei

Don't let the papers determine who you should look up to

Jeff Stelling, Carol Vorderman, Sir Michael Parkinson The game "Name three people, dead-or-alive, you would love to have in your ideal dinner party?" is one that many are familiar with. You may have played in your own dinner party - well, in my experience anyway. I think it's a great game as it allows you to be imaginative. It is also a superb way to know yourself and the people who you're with better. If the three people you want in your ideal dinner party are those you are attracted to, this could mean you have a desire to have that special someone in your life. Maybe all your three choices are no longer with us - this could indicate your wish to communicate with someone in your past, but can't. Some people even choose their family members as their three guests - that could either mean that you haven't allowed your imagination to run wild, or perhaps, you really don't want to get sucked into the celebrity culture and therefore, do not want to think a

Ignoring Russell Brand's politics is the best policy

Me among the Comic Relief audience, in the middle of the row behind Russell Brand. Russell Brand. Isn't he a character? I usually admire people like him. The boy from Essex overcame drug addiction at a young age and has seemingly moved on from those dark days, making a decent living and sending out inspiring messages to the public about the effects of drugs. I should raise my hat to him. I actually saw Russell Brand with my very eyes. Back in March during Comic Relief's Red Nose Day, I was part of the audience at 1.30am where suddenly he came and sat in front of me, presenting the show (see image below). In front of him, there were little notes on the Autocue in front of him to go by, yet he presented his bit with such fluency. Certainly, he had a bit more freedom in what he could say because he was presenting past children's bedtime, but my views of him changed. My views of Mr Brand this time last year was largely negative. I couldn't relate to his humour.

Government must brace itself for a challenging 2014

David Cameron, Ed Miliband and Nick Clegg (Image: Mail Online) The annual political party conference season has been over for more than a week and between then and now, I have given myself time to reflect on the speeches that were made by leaders and key figures, and the stories which overshadowed the conferences. With just over 18 months until the general election to go, we are all on the edge of their seats as it's game on in the political boxing ring. It is certainly true that this year's party conferences made great television. The Conservative conference in Manchester intrigued me. Statistically, they've had a satisfactory year as the party in power. We're no longer in recession; the unemployment rate is slipping while crime is hitting new lows, despite heavy cuts to the police force. This is a recognisable contrast to a disastrous 2011 when everything was going wrong for Britain. As the saying goes, 'things get worse before they get better'. Well,

Dawkins negative vibes does not help people appreciate both sides of religion

Richard Dawkins (Image: Sunday Times) I'm not religious. I don't follow a particular religion and I do not visit church on Sundays, nor do I attend Mosque on Fridays. However, I do believe in God. And I'm a firm believer that religion plays a crucial, positive role in society. We saw that with the Islamic faith when Eid was widely celebrated across the world last month, and I'm sure Christmas will have a similar effect when we celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ three months from now. However, not many people today appreciate religion. Richard Dawkins (pictured above), a prolific religion-sceptic, told an audience recently that atheism (those who don't believe in God) is essentially winning the "war" against religion. He has seen recent statistics fall in favour of those who don't preach, pray in sacred places as there is almost 50% of Britons that do not follow a particular faith. Statistics do not lie. I have noticed that churches, which were

We need more Martin Luther Kings to inspire the world

Martin Luther King (Image: NBC News) This time fifty years ago, Martin Luther King had a dream. He went up on stage in front of hundreds-of-thousands of people who supported his campaign that every black man and woman, adult and child would be treated as equal to any other human being would like to be treated. He won over many people and inspired others to change their attitudes towards others. Fifty years on, his legacy and speech still lives strong. People are still inspired by what he said in Washington and his words are still relatable today. Martin Luther King would be proud of his achievements, I think. He tragically died in 1968, five years after his iconic speech but we can argue that our attitude today has changed for the better. We are appreciating other cultures more now than we ever did. We pledge more money to charities which help others abroad. We are accepting people from other cultures in our lives. As a person in support of multiculturalism, I thank Martin Luth

Twitter trolls do not have The X-Factor

It is almost X-Factor season here in the United Kingdom. The tenth season of the popular so-called talent contest is returning to our television screens where wannabe "singers" get the five minutes of fame they've always craved. The "backstage gossip" started with the announcement that Sharon Osbourne returns to the judging panel and we have discovered this week that Louis Walsh is not going to judge the 2014 series - unless ITV had the sense to cancel the show altogether by then. Also, the show's last year's finalists have already released chart-topping albums - Jahmene Douglas being the recent success story after collecting a number one accolade for his recent album while 2012's winner James Arthur announced he is to release his debut album later this year. Who will follow his footsteps this time around? I'm at the edge of my seat just thinking about it. Can't you sense the sheer joy and excitement on my face? In recent years, I have been

The United Kingdom is not ready to leave the European Union

View of F ørde, Norway (Image from newwinemusic.wordpress) I spent my recent annual leave in Norway. During this eight-day stay, I visited the wonderful city of Bergen and resided in the small village of Alversund, 40-minutes drive from the renowned world heritage city. I explored the charming fjords in addition to walking across peaceful forests and communicating with accommodating people who speak admirably fluent English - some spoke better English than I ever will. My week away was a week well-spent and rest was exactly what I needed, and at the right destination - even if the weather wasn't as warm and dry as the heatwave witnessed in the UK over the recent weeks. However, it is not the weather I wish to discuss. Earlier this month, the British parliament passed on a bill that will enable people of the United Kingdom to have a say on whether the country will stay or exit the European Union. Should this bill be approved by an MP select committee, the referendum shoul

Hostility, Insecurity, Outrage: This is the world that we live in

(l-r) Mohamed Morsi, Edward Snowden, Katie Hopkins I have come to a conclusion recently that we love to be angry. We want to watch something which we know we'll get frustrated about at the end but we just have that sudden urge to rage. The flower power age of the 1960s, when everything was wonderful and care-free, is a long and distant memory. Today, we buy newspapers and watch television, and see a disturbing image or read a controversial column - instead of turning the page with no reaction, our 21st Century instinct has gotten us to rant on social media websites and then we feel the weight off our shoulders - a huge sigh of relief. Don't you worry, I am exactly the same, and hence why I have a blog. However, there have been three news stories that have gone viral over the past few weeks. They have felt like a lifetime since they first broke and I'm sure it will be a while yet until these stories disappear from the media ambush. This week President Assad of Syria

The Voice UK lack Pride in their winners

Leanne Mitchell (Image: The other day, I purchased something unique. When I say "unique", one really means that this product isn't owned by many people. I suppose you can call it a "limited edition" - I mean, around 2,000 people are in possession of this in the UK, whether it is a physical or a downloaded copy - and it cost me a mere £9.61 from an online retailer. What am I talking about? Of course I'm talking about the new Leanne Mitchell album. Wait, what? You're telling me "who's Leanne Mitchell"? You know, the one who won the first series of The Voice UK. She won that show last spring, in front of seven million people in the British Isles. For those asking how she is, she has been finding life after winning this competition over twelve months ago a little challenging. For starters, her debut single, the cover of Whitney Houston's "Run to You" peaked at number 45 in the music charts. Meanwhi

Mae'n DWP yn twp: My year struggle in eventually finding employment

Department for Work and Pensions logo (Image: Third Sector) It has been a while since I last wrote on this website, but it has been within good reason. Less than two weeks ago, I was asked the question I have been waiting someone to ask me since I left University in May 2012. That question was "Would you like the job?". I have to say, it was the best question someone could ever ask me because being unemployed for thirteen months took its toll on me. It was unbearable being unemployed for even a day, let alone a year. But the thought of a company willing to appoint me and give me money for something I enjoy doing, the feeling couldn't get much better. Now I have finished my first full week in employment, I have been reflecting on my time being an unemployed citizen of the United Kingdom. Being one of 2.5+ million without a job for a year, I felt like I was part of a majority but now I am in a job which will enhance my career in the media industry, I am in the bett